Following up on ‘The Messy Room Dilemma’

Thank you to all the readers who have submitted photos and shared their stories for our “Messy Rooms contest”!

We’ve extended the deadline until February 28.

So, keep those pictures coming and receive a free copy of Laura Kastner’s latest book, Getting to Calm: Cool-headed Strategies for Parenting Tweens and Teens (while supplies last).



One Parenthetical subscriber shared the following story, accompanied by the picture below:

“My 16 year old daughter actually posted about her ‘Messy Room’ dilemma on facebook. We all had a good laugh!”

messy post pic



Although this reader’s daughter seems to be taking the dilemma of a messy room in great stride, what is also clear is the openness and humor that accompanied the situation! Many feelings can arise during the battle of the chores so we wanted to conclude this series with a final note on battling the messy room.


While it is important to set boundaries and have clear expectations, it is also essential to keep them in perspective relative to many other factors that need to be taken into account in order to keep a house and family operating smoothly. To this end, we’re pleased to share mother and writer, Meghan Leahy’s recent post, titled, Teen’s Won’t Help With ChoresIn sharing about her personal experience with messy rooms, Meghan writes, “Why, dear writer, would I tell you this story? Am I suggesting that your children laze around eating grapes whilst lifting their legs so you can vacuum under them? No. I don’t want that for you or your family.”

 Check out the article to see Meghan’s response as she tries to answer the following question:

My teenage children resist doing household chores, especially my daughter. She will tell me she is too busy with homework, or is doing something and will get to them later. My son is more responsive when prompted, but has to be reminded all the time. How can I teach my children that doing chores are lifelong skills they will need as adults? How can I instill in them a sense of responsibility to help at home?

Article by Dayana Kupisk

dkupDayana is a graduate student in Human Development & Family Studies at the University of Wisconsin – Madison. Dayana previously worked as a life skills coordinator at a residential living program for teens and young adults. She has one older brother, and, for the first time in her life, is living in a different state from her parents.